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Celebrating Independence Day with fireworks? Here's how to do so safely

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Posted at 7:49 AM, Jul 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-02 23:49:49-04

GALLATIN, Tenn. (WTVF) — Fireworks: they're beautiful to look at and extremely dangerous at the same time.

As we head into the holiday weekend, it's important to focus on safety as pyrotechnics can cause some serious injuries, anything from burns to eye injuries - and also the potential of property damage.

First responders want people to have fun - but do so safely.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is reminding everyone to never place any body part directly over a firework device when lightening the fuse; Always back up at a safe distance after lighting it. The group says never point or throw fireworks at people, or carry them in your pocket. Additionally, don’t shoot them off in metal or glass containers.

Gallatin’s Assistant Fire Chief Scott Woodward said adults should always be around when fireworks are being used.

"We know kids, bright and shiny things interesting. I don't think they really understand, I mean, there's some adults that don't understand the power of fireworks and the kind of damage that they can do," Woodward said. "If you're going to shoot fireworks at home, take care of your children and your pets. Make sure they're out of the area. Make sure you've got a bucket of water hose pipe close by."

Woodward has a final reminder: check to see if fireworks are legal in your area before buying them and be kind to your neighbor.

"I want everybody to celebrate and enjoy the Fourth of July but I think it's very important to be a good neighbor and be aware of your neighbors as well. And just, you know, be a good neighbor," Woodward said.

From people who have post-traumatic stress disorder, anyone with sensitive ears to pets, Independence Day can be a stressful time.

In Gallatin, consumer fireworks are allowed within city limits from July 1 through July 3 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on the Fourth of July from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

With widespread noise over the entire city, officials ask that residents understand emergency services must prioritize public safety requests during the busy holiday weekend. The Gallatin Police Department said there were 364 fireworks-related calls for service last year.